Awhile back, a trio of staggeringly tin-eared teaser trailers for Paul Schrader's The Canyons made their way online, and in the weeks that followed many of us were forced to wonder if the laughter would ever stop.
Eventually, it did, but, at the time, those teasers were just the latest embarrassing setback for the production: during the same period, Schrader's film was refused entry to the Sundance Film Festival, was more-or-less laughed out of the room when it attempted to get into SXSW and, most infamously, found itself the subject of a scathing writeup in The New York Times that centered around the obnoxious behavior of the film's star, Lindsay Lohan.
But you know how the saying goes: "There's no such thing as bad publicity (assuming, of course, that the publicity-in-question has nothing to do with Lindsay Lohan, in which case the person or persons associated with that publicity should prepare themselves for a savage and seemingly-unending Bataan death march to the lowest depths of the word 'bad')". It's because of this very saying - and, y'know, all that buzz about the film being terrible - that many speculated that The Canyons might just end up sitting on a shelf somewhere, or, even more humiliatingly, self-distributed like a Kevin Smith movie.
Thanks to the good folks at IFC Films, however, The Canyons will see a release, after all. As a lifelong connoisseur of terrible films (shout out to Twin-Sitters!), this filled my withered little charcoal heart with joy. Of course, I suspect* that IFC Films picked The Canyons up specifically because of its reputation and the tickets it might sell based on morbid curiosity, but so what? As long as I'm getting a chance to get liquored up and subject myself to this experience (be it at home or in a theater packed with other bloodthirsty snark enthusiasts), what difference does it make what IFC's intentions are? No matter how you cut it, they're deserving of our admiration.
Written by American Psycho and Glamorama (basically Zoolander with gore) scribe Bret Easton Ellis and featuring a lead role for Farrah Superstar: Backdoor Teen Mom star James Deen (who, it's worth noting, actually seems like a really stand-up guy), The Canyons will open in select theaters and on VOD on August 2nd. Viewing party at my place!**
* = The fact that IFC Films' marketing department encourages viewers to "watch the film in the privacy of their own homes" at the end of the trailer seems to indicate that my suspicions are correct. I suppose they could be implying that the film is so sexxxy that it can't even be viewed amongst strangers (if you catch my drift), but I prefer to read that as "You don't really want people to know you paid us to see this thing, do ya?"
** = See above